Is e-filing really a better way to record your taxes?
Americans and the IRS may not agree on everything, but they are mostly on the same page in regards to e-filing individual income tax returns.
The majority of individual income tax returns submitted to the IRS are e-filed.
In return, you can find any refund you are owed quicker, especially if you have it directly deposited to your bank account.
But what about security? And can electronic filing actually give you access to all the forms that you might need in case you have a intricate tax situation? Are there ever situations when you can’t e-file? Let us look at the advantages of e-filing, and whether it may be the best filing option for your needs.
If you are Considering e-filing, some of the advantages include:
- Quick affirmation your forms have been obtained: The IRS will affirm a tax filing has been received within 24 hours of digital submission. For paper filers, the IRS does not send any acknowledgment your forms have arrived .
Timely refunds: When you submit a paper filing, it can take six to eight months to be given a tax refund. With e-filing, you are going to receive your money in 3 weeks or less. Choosing direct deposit may also speed up the refund process.
Reduced chance of mistakes: According to the IRS, there’s approximately a 1 percent error rate on e-filed returns, compared with a 20% rate of errors on paper filings. The IRS also provides more information on problems discovered on e-filed yields compared with paper yields.
Easy payment procedure: If you owe the IRS money, it’s easier to pay at your convenience if you e-file. It’s possible to submit returns early and pay later if necessary, provided that you pay from the April 15 filing deadline. Additionally you have the choice to pay your balance by making use of the IRS Direct pay service from your checking or savings account, filing a credit card through a payment processor for a fee, or paying by check or money order.
Digital storage of tax data: Submitting returns electronically means there’s an electronic copy of your tax documents. So if something happens to your paperwork, then you will have an electronic backup.
The good news: Most taxpayers do opt to e-file and find those advantages — and the process of doing this is simple.
You have four options for submitting an electronically filed tax return to the IRS.
- Utilize IRS Free File: If your adjusted gross income is $72,000 or less you could be able to use the IRS Free File program. The types do the math for you and offer basic guidance. You can only do your federal return with all these kinds.
- Utilize an internet tax preparation tax or service applications: Tax preparation software and online filing services are alternatives. These choices are a simple way to complete and e-file your forms. Some applications providers charge for their apps, Some are free. The software asks you simple questions about your life and financing to guide you through the completion of your forms.
- Get complimentary, in-person tax help: In most states, you can find volunteers to help prepare and e-file returns. However, eligibility for free aid is normally restricted based on income, and a few providers cater to particular demographic groups. The IRS maintains a record of authorized providers, but be aware this option is very likely to be the most costly one.
Employing online tax prep software is far and away the favored approach of most taxpayers. Actually, the IRS says it expected more than four in five tax returns to be filed through tax return prep program.
Is e-filing really stable?
While e-filing is suitable, you may be worried about safety — especially with all these data breaches. But experts agree this isn’t an issue that should deter you from e-filing.
“E-filing a tax return has turned out to be an extremely secure way to file your taxes,” says Scott Grissom, vice president of product direction, marketing and sales at LegalShield. “In actuality, it can be more secure than paper filing as you’re sending your private information through an encrypted network rather than exposing your information in the email.”
Dennis Chow, vice president of information security at SCIS Security, explains the IRS has put security measures in place to keep your data safe. “Trainers normally use IRS specific APIs that need ab sessions,” Chow says. “All this is routed over TLS encrypted links .”
It’s very important to employ a trustworthy service to assist you file your taxes. Chow advises to not e-file on a public computer or use an internet connection that is not private.
For many taxpayers, it makes sense to e-file a yield since it is the most convenient way to file your tax information to the IRS and it allows for timely refunds and effortless payment choices. Just make certain to use tax planning software from a dependable source, so that you can make certain the information which you provide to transmit to the IRS will be kept secure.